After spending time with Ryan's family, we went down to visit with my family.
The temperatures went down, too! And the baby dills had the best surprise: SNOW! In fact, you just ask them about it and they'll tell you they ate snow for breakfast. They have since learned that you can pour maple syrup on it for a "Nature's Snowcone," and they've vowed that's exactly what they're going to do the next time they run into the white stuff.
Caption: Mess with the bull.....you get the horns. My girls sure do love my brother. They'd marry him if they could.
A record written in stone of the my parents' accumulating grandchildren. They're just a couple behind. They get them engraved by this etsy shop.
We celebrated the first day of Spring while we were there, my ever faithful gardening father, starting his seeds inside, carrying them out to enjoy the sun during the day and bringing them inside. Growing up, he was always lovingly tending to the plants, teaching us the beauty of celebrating seedlings, and watching them bring forth beauty, be it flowers, fruit, or vegetable.
He's also the world's best parcel sender. Anyone who has received one of their stars will wholeheartedly agree.
Our first morning there, we descending the stairs to the wafting scent of freshly baked popovers which were accompanied by homemade blueberry sauce to drizzle. Can I move back home, please?
I also got to attend my oldest sister's ultrasound for her 3rd baby. That never gets old, seeing the tiny heart beating, watching those first movements. She got to find out if this new little life will be another girl or boy...are you telling yet, Ashley?
And, of course there's a whole lot of life with this brood of ours. Sometimes too much: Divine trying to fix Olive's hair, Clover wanting to know what's going on on the other side of the shot, Pearl making wise cracks (I'm sure of it), Azure being the only willing participant, and Drummer's diaper so saturated it is taking a journey down one leg. Sigh. This is us.
We went for brownies, that somehow don't taste nearly as good as we thought they would,
but still the best milk out there.
Disappointment that it was brownies, not ice cream.
Being eaten by Drummer is in my top ten list of favorite things in life.
Watching kids bowl is probably on that list, too.
Another life we celebrated while we were there was my dad's.
He happens to be born on the first day of spring, which is entirely appropriate given his green thumb.
The tradition is to go around the table and tell something you love about the birthday person, which is really easy to do. He makes life beautiful. He doesn't wait for a special occasion to send mail or to decorate the table or bake yummy treats. Life is all the occasion he needs.
It was fun to see some of my girlie hand-me-downs on Ashley's little girl, Ivy, some which were made for Divine!
By the time we left I finally got Eli smiling back at me (whose birthday we also celebrated). Success.
We were able to see the site for the potential future home of my parents,
as they get ready for a new chapter in their life book.
They're like two little kids,
planning the perfect tree house.
And it will be perfect. It makes me happy to see them giddy.
In fact, they already have the doorbell. It arrived in the mail while we were there.
Now, all they need is the house.
I returned filled and satiated, but with an ache to be closer to family, that I can go fabric shopping with my mom every week (we both scored quite the stash!), that I can share in the milestones like ultrasounds and birthdays, and of course the perpetual cooking of and eating good food together. It was rejuvenating to be with both our families, celebrating life in so many different ways.